The time-worn saying goes, “You can’t fight city hall.” But every one in a blue moon, someone comes along who succeeds in doing so. The challenge is refreshing, and the guts to do so renews our faith in mankind.
Bob Dylan did so. So did Steve Jobs. And whether you like him or not, so has Donald Trump. No matter your position on the political continuum from right to left, you must admit that the establishment hates Trump. And they fear his upending of the Republican Party purely as a matter of raw power and its threat to the existing power brokers.
Trump’s drive towards the Republican nomination represents nothing less than a hostile takeover of the Republican Party. As Republican elders scratch their heads at his popularity and rejection of key Republican orthodoxies, they have come to see their own machinations work against them.
Republican elites sanctioned and coddled the nascent Tea Party movement, and some believe created the movement out of whole cloth. Now, in a twist of Dylanesque revenge, the Tea Party has declared its independence. The policy positions they supported, while far to the right, never represented their true essence. Donald Trump provided their best spokesperson because the Tea Party always transcended a 10-point plan and favored revolutionary vigor instead.
Some of the things Trump says rightly strike fear among Republican elites and regular voters alike. But these statements often pop out during freewheeling rallies, and backtracking often occurs within hours.
Moreover, Donald Trump does not closely regulate his public speaking, with every word parsed among focus groups. The efforts of his opponents to tar him with his own words may provide a factual case against him, but they ignore his spirit and the spirit of his followers. He does seem to be a good man, much more so than the typical politician. His attacks and insults may shock people unused to political realities, but he has only expanded upon the typical negative TV ad, here today and gone tomorrow.
When Trump is evaluated in a non-factual, non-linear manner, his campaign actually makes a lot of sense.